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Two killed, several injured in Norwegian cruise ship fire

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Cruise ship catches fire in Norway
  • NEW: Police suspect there was an explosion in the engine room
  • NEW: Firefighters are battling to stabilize the damaged ship, which is taking on water
  • Two people have died after a fire on the cruise ship, Norwegian police confirm
  • Nine more people have been taken to the hospital, police say
  • Norway

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(CNN) -- Two crew members have died after an engine room fire on a Norwegian cruise ship, Norwegian police confirmed Thursday.

Nine people have been taken to the hospital, a spokeswoman for Sunnmore police district told CNN. There were 55 crew on board the ship, MS Nordlys.

All 207 passengers who were aboard the ship have been safely evacuated and taken to a hotel in the town of Alesund, operator Hurtigruten ASA said. They are of various nationalities.

Two of the crew members are seriously injured, Borghild Eldoen, a spokeswoman for the Joint Rescue Coordination Centers for southern Norway, told CNN. One has been taken to a specialist burns hospital in Bergen, Norway's second city.

She said police suspected an explosion had occurred in the engine room.

The fire is now under control but firefighters are battling to stabilize the multi-deck ship, which is taking on water, with the use of pumps, Eldoen said.

Everybody on board has now been accounted for and no one is believed missing, she added.

The cruise ship was operating on a popular tourist route from Bergen, to the small town of Kirkenes in the country's far northeast when the fire broke out, forcing the vessel to stop at Alesund, CNN affiliate TV2 reported.

Alesund, a town of some 40,000 people surrounded by fjords, is 226 kilometers (147 miles) north of Bergen.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Hurtigruten staff in Alesund are booking guests on to alternative vessels or making arrangements for them to travel home, the company said.

The 400 foot-long Nordlys, built in 1994, has 475 berths for passengers and can carry 45 cars.

CNN's Laura Smith-Spark, Laura Perez Maestro, David Wilkinson, James Partington, and Stefan Simons contributed to this report.